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Austria: Government#

Country nameconventional long form: Republic of Austria
conventional short form: Austria
local long form: Republik Oesterreich
local short form: Oesterreich
CapitalVienna Vienna
geographic coordinates: 48 12 N, 16 22 E
time difference: UTC+1 (6 hours ahead of Washington, DC, during Standard Time)
daylight saving time: +1hr, begins last Sunday in March; ends last Sunday in October
Administrative divisions9 states (Bundeslaender, singular - Bundesland); Burgenland, Karnten (Carinthia), Niederoesterreich (Lower Austria), Oberoesterreich (Upper Austria), Salzburg, Steiermark (Styria), Tirol (Tyrol), Vorarlberg, Wien (Vienna)
Constitutionseveral previous; latest adopted 1 October 1920, revised 1929, replaced May 1934 (authoritarian-corporate constitution), replaced by German Weimar constitution in 1938 following German annexation; latest reinstated 1 May 1945 (1920 constitution with 1929 revisions); amended many times, last in 2008 (2013)
Executive branchchief of state: President Heinz FISCHER (SPOe) (since 8 July 2004)
head of government: Chancellor Werner FAYMANN (SPOe) (since 2 December 2008); Vice Chancellor Michael SPINDELEGGER (OeVP) (since 21 April 2011)
cabinet: Council of Ministers chosen by the president on the advice of the chancellor
elections: president elected for a six-year term (eligible for a second term) by direct popular vote and formally sworn into office before the Federal Assembly or Bundesversammlung; presidential election last held on 25 April 2010 (next to be held on 25 April 2016); chancellor formally chosen by the president but determined by the coalition parties forming a parliamentary majority; vice chancellor chosen by the president on the advice of the chancellor
election results: Heinz FISCHER reelected president; percent of vote - Heinz FISCHER 79.33%, Barbara ROSENKRANZ 15.24%, Rudolf GEHRING 5.43%
note: government coalition - SPOe and OeVP
Flag descriptionthree equal horizontal bands of red (top), white, and red; the flag design is certainly one of the oldest - if not the oldest - national banners in the world; according to tradition, in 1191, following a fierce battle in the Third Crusade, Duke Leopold V of Austria's white tunic became completely blood-spattered; upon removal of his wide belt or sash, a white band was revealed; the red-white-red color combination was subsequently adopted as his banner
Independence12 November 1918 (republic proclaimed); notable earlier dates: 976 (Margravate of Austria established); 17 September 1156 (Duchy of Austria founded); 11 August 1804 (Austrian Empire proclaimed)
Judicial branchhighest court(s): Supreme Court of Justice or Oberster Gerichtshof (consists of 85 judges organized into 17 senates or panels of five judges each); Constitutional Court or Verfassungsgerichtshof (consists of 20 judges including 6 substitutes; Administrative Court or Verwaltungsgerichtshof - 2 judges plus other members depending on the importance of the case)
judge selection and term of office: Supreme Court judges nominated by executive branch departments and appointed by the president; judges serve for life; Constitutional Court judges nominated by several executive branch departments and approved by the president; judges serve for life; Administrative Court judges recommended by executive branch departments and appointed by the president; terms of judges and members determined by the president
subordinate courts: Courts of Appeal (4); Regional Courts (20); district courts (120); county courts
Legal systemcivil law system; judicial review of legislative acts by the Constitutional Court
Legislative branchbicameral Federal Assembly or Bundesversammlung consists of Federal Council or Bundesrat (62 seats; delegates appointed by state parliaments with each state receiving 3 to 12 seats in proportion to its population; members serve five- or six-year terms) and the National Council or Nationalrat (183 seats; members elected by popular vote for a five-year term under a system of proportional representation with partially open party lists)
elections: National Council - last held on 29 September 2013 (next to be held by September 2018)
election results: National Council - percent of vote by party - SPOe 27.1%, OeVP 23.8%, FPOe 21.4%, Greens 11.5%, Team Stronach for Austria 5.8%, NEOS - The New Austria 4.8%, other 5.6%; seats by party - SPOe 53, OeVP 46, FPOe 42, Greens 22; Team Stronach for Austria 11, NEOS - The New Austria 9
International organization participationADB (nonregional member), AfDB (nonregional member), Australia Group, BIS, BSEC (observer), CD, CE, CEI, CERN, EAPC, EBRD, ECB, EIB, EMU, ESA, EU, FAO, FATF, G-9, IADB, IAEA, IBRD, ICAO, ICC (national committees), ICRM, IDA, IEA, IFAD, IFC, IFRCS, IGAD (partners), ILO, IMF, IMO, Interpol, IOC, IOM, IPU, ISO, ITSO, ITU, ITUC (NGOs), MIGA, MINURSO, NEA, NSG, OAS (observer), OECD, OIF (observer), OPCW, OSCE, Paris Club, PCA, PFP, Schengen Convention, SELEC (observer), UN, UNCTAD, UNDOF, UNESCO, UNFICYP, UNHCR, UNIFIL, UNTSO, UNWTO, UPU, WCO, WFTU (NGOs), WHO, WIPO, WMO, WTO, ZC
National holidayNational Day, 26 October (1955); note - commemorates the passage of the law on permanent neutrality
Political pressure groups and leadersAustrian Trade Union Federation or OeGB (nominally independent but primarily Social Democratic)
Federal Economic Chamber
Labor Chamber or AK (Social Democratic-leaning think tank)
OeVP-oriented Association of Austrian Industrialists or IV
Roman Catholic Church, including its chief lay organization, Catholic Action
other: three composite leagues of the Austrian People's Party or OeVP representing business, labor, farmers, and other nongovernment organizations in the areas of environment and human rights
Political parties and leadersAlliance for the Future of Austria or BZOe (Josef BUCHER)
Austrian People's Party or OeVP (Michael SPINDELEGGER)
Communist Party of Austria or KPOe (Mirko MESSNER)
Freedom Party of Austria or FPOe (Heinz Christian STRACHE)
The Greens (Eva GLAWISCHNIG)
NEOS - The New Austria (Matthias STROLZ)
Social Democratic Party of Austria or SPOe (Werner FAYMANN)
"Team Stronach for Austria" (Frank STRONACH)
Suffrage16 years of age; universal
Government typefederal republic
Diplomatic representation in the USchief of mission: Ambassador Hans Peter MANZ (since 2 December 2011)
chancery: 3524 International Court NW, Washington, DC 20008-3035
telephone: (1) (202) 895-6700
FAX: (1) (202) 895-6750
consulate(s) general: Chicago, Los Angeles, New York
National anthemname: "Bundeshymne" (Federal Hymn)
lyrics/music: Paula von PRERADOVIC/Wolfgang Amadeus MOZART or Johann HOLZER (disputed)
note: adopted 1947; the anthem is also known as "Land der Berge, Land am Strome" (Land of the Mountains, Land on the River); Austria adopted a new national anthem after World War II to replace the former imperial anthem composed by Franz Josef HAYDN, which had been appropriated by Germany in 1922 and was now associated with the Nazi regime
International law organization participationaccepts compulsory ICJ jurisdiction; accepts ICCt jurisdiction
National symbol(s)golden eagle, Alpine gentian, edelweiss
Diplomatic representation from the USchief of mission: Ambassador Alexa L. WESNER (since 6 September 2013)
embassy: Boltzmanngasse 16, A-1090, Vienna
mailing address: use embassy street address
telephone: (43) (1) 31339-0
FAX: (43) (1) 3100682